Discipline: Literature – fiction

Vu Tran

Discipline: Literature – fiction
Region: Chicago, IL
MacDowell Fellowships: 2017, 2023

Born in Vietnam and raised in Oklahoma, Vu Tran’s first novel, Dragonfish, was a New York Times Notable Book and a San Francisco Chronicle Best Books of the Year. His short fiction has appeared in the O. Henry Prize Stories, the Best American Mystery Stories, Ploughshares, Virginia Quarterly, and The New York Times.

He is the winner a Whiting Writers’ Award and has received fellowships from Bread Loaf, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, the NEA, Yaddo, Vermont Studio Center, and MacDowell. He received his M.F.A. from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and his Ph. D. from the Black Mountain Institute at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He is currently an assistant professor of practice in English and creative writing at the University of Chicago, where he directs the fiction program.

During his first MacDowell Fellowship in 2017, Tran began work on his second novel, then tentatively titled Intruders in Smoke, a gothic novel that engages with the refugee experience in America. In 2023, Tran completed a comprehensive rewrite of a short story he published 15 years ago, called "Like Evening," for the forthcoming anthology of Vietnamese and Vietnamese-American fiction, Remembrance, Reconnection and Reconciliation. He also continued work on the middle section of his novel-in-progress, Your Origins, a gothic romance to be will be published by W.W. Norton & Company in 2025.



Vu Tran worked in the Mansfield studio.

The Helen Coolidge Mansfield Studio was donated by graduates of the Mansfield War Service Classes for Reconstruction Aides. Helen Mansfield helped found the New York MacDowell Club. The small, shingled frame structure with stone foundation was originally fronted on the west side by a neat white picket fence and gate, a garden, and a stone pathway…

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